U.S. Arrests Turkish Nationals After Extradition Request

Turkish Justice Minister Tunc has confirmed the Turkish dual nationals Eylem Tok and Cihantimur Tok have been arrested in the U.S. after fleeting Turkey following a hit-and-run. Cihantimur is a dual U.S.-Turkish national.

On May 23rd, 2024, Interpol issued a Red Notice for the duo, mother (Eylem) and son (Cihantimur) after she fled Turkey, hoping to shield him from prosecution.

On March 1st, 2024, Cihantimur drove his car into a crowd of five people in Istanbul’s affluent neighborhood of Gokturk. Eylem fled Turkey the same day with her son without notifying emergency services of the accident.

Haci Orhan, lawyer for the family of 29-year-old Murat Aci who was killed in the crash, called for the duo’s extradition back in March when they were spotted in Manhattan. Eylem stated back in March she was sorry and they would return to Turkey, but never have. They flew to the U.S. via a connecting flight in Egypt.

It is not currently clear if the U.S. will extradite the duo or prosecute them.